The decision by Maple Leaf Foods CEO Michael McCain to hit out at the US over the tensions with Iran can be viewed with empathy but it is not without business risk, argues GlobalData.
McCain recently took to Twitter to criticize the US government and to attack President Trump amid the ill-feeling between Washington and Tehran and in the wake of the shooting down of a Ukrainian airliner by an Iranian missile.
Dean Best, Food Editor at GlobalData, says:
“Relatives of a Maple Leaf worker were on-board the airliner and one can understand the anger and loss McCain and the wider organization must be feeling. McCain said his statements were ‘personal reflections’. However, he used the official Maple Leaf Foods Twitter page to make his comments, including condemning the US President as a ‘narcissist’. Maple Leaf has a sizeable chunk of its business in the US and has recently moved to build its operations in the market through acquisitions. The US President can himself use social media to defend his position or to rebut criticism, moves often fuelled by his more fervent supporters. It is unusual for company CEOs to speak out on geopolitical matters. While one can empathize with how McCain must be feeling for his colleague’s loss, his comments could lead to problems for Maple Leaf’s business south of the Canadian border.”